I don’t often participate in Top Ten Tuesday, but I am today because it’s a choose-your-own-theme week and because I’ve been thinking a lot about rereading. I’ve been doing a fair amount of rereading this year, which is why my reviews of new books has been so spotty. For the past few years, I’ve had a strict no rereading policy, but I’ve let up on that for 2013. As a result, I’m participating in this week’s Top 10 Tuesday, hosted by The Broke and Bookish.
I’ve long claimed that Frankie Landau-Banks is one of my favorite YA novels of all time, but I haven’t ever actually reread it. Most of my most beloved novels have been read countless times, but this one hasn’t, for whatever reason. I have a copy, and I talk about this book often enough, so what’s holding me back? Am I afraid I won’t love it enough the second time through? I suppose it’s a distinct possibility, but if the book is half as clever, smart, and thought-provoking as I remember it being, it’s unlikely.
Time was, I used to reread this series nearly every July. It’s been a couple of years since I reread these books, and it’s probably about time to do so. I find the books are a certain kind of comfort food, and I usually end up so enmeshed in the world of Harry Potter that going back to regular books is sort of difficult. I’ll probably save a reread of these for the summer, when I can sit on our deck and sip lemonade (spiked, probably) and while away whole hours.
Eagar is one of my favorite YA authors, and unfortunately she’s still predominantly unknown here in the United States. You can find a copy of this book for your Kindle on Amazon, but you’ll be hard-pressed to find a physical copy of the book that doesn’t require international shipping. One of the most moving books I’ve read in recent memory, Raw Blue sticks with you long after you’ve finished it. Eagar is an author to check out, if you have the means of obtaining her books. I should reread this one, because I love it so.
The Lover’s Dictionary is one of those books that will present differently to you depending on where you are in a given relationship or life stage. Moving, clever, and often achingly real, I tore through this book the first time I read it. I’d like to go back and read it again and really take my time with it. There’s a lot I’m sure I missed, and being in the healthiest romantic relationship of my life would give me a fresh perspective, I think.
5. Good Oil by Laura Buzo (published in the US as Love and Other Perishable Items)
I read Laura Buzo’s excellent debut when it was still an Australia-only publication, so I’m including it on this list with its original title (which I prefer, for so many reasons). One of the smartest, most unique coming-of-age tales, Buzo’s book is a must-read for any fan of contemporary YA. Heartachey, honest, and funny, this is a book worth a second read.
I remember reading Adele Griffin’s Tighter in something like one or two sittings. I remember literally not being able to climb off the treadmill because I needed to see what was going to happen next. The book is incredibly engrossing, tense, and fraught with the perfect kind of twisty, mind-bending suspense that is guaranteed to hook you. Pairs well with The Turning of the Screw, which is the novel it’s adapted from.
Lucy Peale is a holdover from my own childhood, and it’s a book that I should own a copy of but don’t, for some reason. Blame several moves and an occasional book purge. The book is definitely one I should purchase a copy of, but the fact that it’s out of print has delayed this, for whatever reason. A book aimed at the middle-grade set, this one focuses on a young girl from a scary-religious family who finds herself pregnant and cast out. It’s atmospheric, beautiful, and very real.
By far Niffenegger’s less-popular full-length novel, it’s also the more interesting, thorny one. It features at least two sets of twins, a ghost, and a very quirky apartment complex in London. I haven’t re-read it, but I should, because the novel’s twists and turns almost necessitate it. Dark and completely absorbing, this would be a great fall/Halloween read.
The first time I read this book, it took me more than a year to complete it. It’s not that Shriver’s book isn’t interesting or engrossing, because it is. Blame it on life stuff and a short attention span. By the time I finished it, I was cursing myself for waiting so long. It’s like Sliding Doors in book form without the cute romantic comedy tropes.
Dark, dark, dark. This is one of the most disturbing books I’ve ever read, but there’s so much to think about and chew on that reading this slim novel just once doesn’t do it justice. You have to revisit it and really spend time with the characters, no matter how disturbing they are.
What’s your top ten this week? What would you reread, given the chance?